CHAPTER 945*
(OFFENSES AGAINST HUMANITY AND MORALITY)
CRUELTY TO ANIMALS

      *Secs. 53-247-53-253 cited. 218 C. 757.

Table of Contents

Secs. 53-242 to 53-246. Blasphemy. Obscenity. Intoxication.
Sec. 53-247. Cruelty to animals. Animals engaged in exhibition of fighting. Intentional injury or killing of police animals or dogs in volunteer canine search and rescue teams.
Sec. 53-248. Sale or treatment of animals unable to work.
Sec. 53-249. Cruelty to poultry.
Sec. 53-249a. Sale or gift of dyed fowl or rabbits prohibited.
Sec. 53-250. Use of animals, reptiles and birds.
Sec. 53-251. Docking of horses' tails.
Sec. 53-252. Transportation of animals on railroads.
Sec. 53-253. Notice of arrest of offender to be given.
Sec. 53-254. Causing dependency or delinquency of children.

      Secs. 53-242 to 53-246. Blasphemy. Obscenity. Intoxication. Sections 53-242 to 53-246, inclusive, are repealed.

      (1949 Rev., S. 8566, 8567, 8570, 8580, 8755; 1955, S. 3293d; 1963, P.A. 156; 409, S. 1-4; February, 1965, P.A. 132; 241, S. 2; 574, S. 45; 1969, P.A. 828, S. 214.)

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      Sec. 53-247. Cruelty to animals. Animals engaged in exhibition of fighting. Intentional injury or killing of police animals or dogs in volunteer canine search and rescue teams. (a) Any person who overdrives, drives when overloaded, overworks, tortures, deprives of necessary sustenance, mutilates or cruelly beats or kills or unjustifiably injures any animal, or who, having impounded or confined any animal, fails to give such animal proper care or neglects to cage or restrain any such animal from doing injury to itself or to another animal or fails to supply any such animal with wholesome air, food and water, or unjustifiably administers any poisonous or noxious drug or substance to any domestic animal or unjustifiably exposes any such drug or substance, with intent that the same shall be taken by an animal, or causes it to be done, or, having charge or custody of any animal, inflicts cruelty upon it or fails to provide it with proper food, drink or protection from the weather or abandons it or carries it or causes it to be carried in a cruel manner, or fights with or baits, harasses or worries any animal for the purpose of making it perform for amusement, diversion or exhibition, shall be fined not more than one thousand dollars or imprisoned not more than one year or both.

      (b) Any person who maliciously and intentionally maims, mutilates, tortures, wounds or kills an animal shall be fined not more than five thousand dollars or imprisoned not more than five years or both. The provisions of this subsection shall not apply to any licensed veterinarian while following accepted standards of practice of the profession or to any person while following approved methods of slaughter under section 22-272a, while performing medical research as an employee of, student in or person associated with any hospital, educational institution or laboratory, while following generally accepted agricultural practices or while lawfully engaged in the taking of wildlife.

      (c) Any person who knowingly (1) owns, possesses, keeps or trains an animal engaged in an exhibition of fighting for amusement or gain, (2) possesses, keeps or trains an animal with the intent that it be engaged in an exhibition of fighting for amusement or gain, (3) permits an act described in subdivision (1) or (2) of this subsection to take place on premises under his control, (4) acts as judge or spectator at an exhibition of animal fighting for amusement or gain, or (5) bets or wagers on the outcome of an exhibition of animal fighting for amusement or gain, shall be fined not more than five thousand dollars or imprisoned not more than five years or both.

      (d) Any person who intentionally injures any animal while such animal is in the performance of its duties under the supervision of a peace officer, as defined in section 53a-3, or intentionally injures a dog that is a member of a volunteer canine search and rescue team, as defined in section 5-249, while such dog is in the performance of its duties under the supervision of the active individual member of such team, shall be fined not more than five thousand dollars or imprisoned not more than five years or both.

      (e) Any person who intentionally kills any animal while such animal is in the performance of its duties under the supervision of a peace officer, as defined in section 53a-3, or intentionally kills a dog that is a member of a volunteer canine search and rescue team, as defined in section 5-249, while such dog is in the performance of its duties under the supervision of the active individual member of such team, shall be fined not more than ten thousand dollars or imprisoned not more than ten years or both.

      (1949 Rev., S. 8571; 1971, P.A. 99; P.A. 84-181; P.A. 89-121; P.A. 90-325, S. 30, 32; P.A. 91-35, S. 3, 5; P.A. 93-36; P.A. 96-243, S. 8, 16; P.A. 04-241, S. 4.)

      History: 1971 act deleted references to "unnecessary" cruelty or neglect to provide proper care and to "cruelly" abandoning animal; P.A. 84-181 increased the maximum fine from $250 to $750; P.A. 89-121 increased the maximum fine from $750 to $1,000; P.A. 90-325 excepted baiting, harassing or worrying any animal in connection with cow-chip bingo from the penalty provisions; P.A. 91-35 deleted exception for baiting, harassing or worrying any animal in connection with cow-chip bingo established by P.A. 90-325; P.A. 93-36 added Subsec. (b) re penalty for intentional killing of a police animal; P.A. 96-243 relettered former Subsec. (b) as Subsec. (d), inserting new Subsec. (b) re malicious and intentional acts re animals and Subsec. (c) re fighting animals exhibited for amusement or gain, effective June 6, 1996; P.A. 04-241 added new Subsec. (d) re penalty for any person who intentionally injures any animal while such animal is performing duties under supervision of a peace officer or intentionally injures a dog in a volunteer canine search and rescue team while such dog is performing duties under supervision of the active individual member of such team, redesignated existing Subsec. (d) as Subsec. (e) and amended same by doubling penalty for intentional killing of a police animal and providing that any person who intentionally kills a dog in a canine search and rescue team while such dog is performing duties under supervision of the active individual member of such team shall be fined not more than $10,000 or imprisoned not more than 10 years or both.

      See Sec. 29-108a for definition of "animal".

      Cruelty to animals in overworking or neglecting, etc., may be alleged as a continuous offense. 54 C. 2. Information and charge under allegation of neglecting horses. 75 C. 268. It was error for the court to instruct the jury that the defendant owner of animals cruelly treated by a bailee, was chargeable with a strict liability hereunder. 167 C. 434.

      Cited erroneously as Sec. 53a-247. 17 CA 326. Cited. 36 CA 364.

      The fact that defendant, a dog warden, was prosecuted for cruelly beating or unjustifiably injuring a dog, not for killing it, did not preclude him from claiming the benefit of section 22-358. 3 Conn. Cir. Ct. 62. In determining whether the defendant acted "cruelly", the issue of justification should be carefully considered. Id., 64. It was not enough, for the guidance of the jury, for the court to define "cruelty" in its general sense. What is cruelty in one set of circumstances may not be cruelty in another. Id.


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      Sec. 53-248. Sale or treatment of animals unable to work. Any person who sells, offers for sale, trades or gives away any horse for the purpose of being worked, which could not be worked in this state without violating the provisions of section 53-247, or any person who leads, rides or drives an animal on any public highway for any purpose except that of conveying the animal to a suitable place for its humane keeping or killing or for medical or surgical treatment, which animal could not be worked in this state without violating the provisions of said section, shall be fined not more than two hundred dollars or imprisoned not more than six months or both.

      (1949 Rev., S. 8572.)

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      Sec. 53-249. Cruelty to poultry. Any crate or other container used for the purpose of transporting, shipping or holding for sale any live poultry shall be in a sanitary condition and shall be constructed so as to provide sufficient ventilation and warmth, and such poultry, while in such container, shall receive such reasonable care as may be required to prevent unnecessary suffering. Any person who violates any provision of this section shall be fined not more than one hundred dollars or imprisoned not more than thirty days or both.

      (1949 Rev., S. 8573.)

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      Sec. 53-249a. Sale or gift of dyed fowl or rabbits prohibited. Any person who sells or offers for sale at retail or gives away, living chickens, ducklings, other fowl or rabbits, which have been dyed, colored or otherwise treated so as to import to them an artificial color, shall be fined not more than one hundred fifty dollars.

      (February, 1965, P.A. 82, S. 1; P.A. 10-32, S. 149.)

      History: P.A. 10-32 made a technical change, effective May 10, 2010.

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      Sec. 53-250. Use of animals, reptiles and birds. Any person who uses any animal, reptile or bird for the purpose of soliciting any alms, collection, contribution, subscription, donation or payment of money, or uses any animal or bird as a prize or award in the operation of any game or device, or exhibits any wild animal in connection with any business for the purpose of attracting trade upon any street, highway or public park or at any fair, exhibition or place of amusement, recreation or entertainment, or owns, keeps or has in his custody any animal, reptile or bird for any such purpose, shall be fined not more than one hundred dollars or imprisoned not more than thirty days or both, but no provision of this section shall be construed so as to apply to the exhibition of any animal, reptile or bird by any educational institution or in a zoological garden or in connection with any theatrical exhibition or circus or to the use of any animal in a cow-chip raffle.

      (1949 Rev., S. 8574; P.A. 90-325, S. 31, 32; P.A. 91-35, S. 4, 5.)

      History: P.A. 90-325 provided that the section not apply to the use of any animal in cow-chip bingo; P.A. 91-35 substituted cow-chip "raffle" for cow-chip "bingo".

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      Sec. 53-251. Docking of horses' tails. (a) Any person who cuts the bone of the tail of any horse for the purpose of docking the tail or who cuts the muscles or tendons of the tail of a horse, or otherwise operates upon it in any manner for the purpose or with the effect of altering the natural carriage of the tail, or who causes or knowingly permits such cutting or operation to be done upon premises of which he is the owner, lessee, proprietor or user, or assists in or is present at such cutting or operation, shall be fined not more than three hundred dollars or imprisoned not more than one year or both. Any horse with a tail set or apparently with a tail set shall be accessible and subject to inspection by any officer or agent of the Connecticut Humane Society.

      (b) If a horse is found with the bone, muscles or tendons of its tail so cut and with the wound resulting from such cutting unhealed upon the premises of any person, such facts shall be prima facie evidence that the person who occupies or has the use of the premises on which such horse is so found has committed the offense described in subsection (a). If a horse is found with the bone, muscles or tendons of its tail so cut and with the wound resulting from such cutting unhealed in the charge or custody of any person, such facts shall be prima facie evidence that the person having the charge or custody of such horse has committed the offense charged in said subsection (a).

      (c) No provision of this section shall be construed to prevent the operation by a registered veterinarian upon the tail of a horse when such operation is necessary for the health of the horse or is the means of effecting the natural carriage of its tail.

      (1949 Rev., S. 8575.)

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      Sec. 53-252. Transportation of animals on railroads. No railroad company, in transporting animals, shall permit them to be confined in cars more than twenty-eight consecutive hours, except when transported in cars in which they have proper food, water, space and opportunity for rest, without unloading them for food, water and rest, for at least five consecutive hours, unless prevented by storm or other accidental cause; and, in estimating such confinement, the time during which the animals have been confined, without such rest, on connecting roads from which they are received, shall be included. Animals so unloaded shall be properly fed, watered and sheltered during such rest by the owner or person having their custody or, on his neglect, by the railroad company transporting them, at his expense; and such company shall, in such case, have a lien upon such animals for food, care and custody furnished and shall not be liable for any detention of them for such purpose. Any such company or the owner or custodian of such animals, who does not comply with the provisions of this section, shall be fined not more than five hundred dollars. The knowledge and acts of agents of, and of persons employed by, such company, in regard to animals transported, owned or employed by it or in its custody, shall be held to be its acts and knowledge.

      (1949 Rev., S. 8577.)

      See Sec. 29-108a for definition of "animal".

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      Sec. 53-253. Notice of arrest of offender to be given. Any person making an arrest for a violation of the laws relating to cruelty to animals shall use reasonable diligence to give notice thereof to the owner of animals found in the charge or custody of the person arrested and shall properly care and provide for them until their owner takes charge of them, provided the owner shall take charge of them within sixty days from the date of such notice; and the person making such arrest shall have a lien on such animals for the expense of such care and provision.

      (1949 Rev., S. 8578.)

      See Sec. 29-108a for definition of "animal".

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      Sec. 53-254. Causing dependency or delinquency of children. Section 53-254 is repealed.

      (1949 Rev., S. 8579; 1969, P.A. 828, S. 214.)

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